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Red V run white hot to put Warriors to the sword

Another dazzling display by Zac Lomax led the Dragons to a resounding 30-12 victory over the Warriors at WIN Stadium on Friday night.

In the same week it was confirmed he would call Parramatta home in 2025, Lomax showed he has no intention of clocking off early with a high-flying try and a monster two-point field goal.

A penalty against Francis Molo for holding down gave the Warriors ideal field position and Shaun Johnson capitalised in the 12th minute when he went through a gaping hole to post the opening try which he converted for a 6-0 lead.

When Moses Suli coughed up possession four minutes later the home side were put under enormous pressure for three consecutive sets but a goal line intercept by Jacob Liddle saw the Dragons come away.

The Dragons hit back in the 25th minute when Ben Hunt took the ball to the line and found a rampaging Suli, who left Rocco Berry in his wake to post the first try for the home side.

Shaun Johnson Try

With Hunt's kicking game coming the fore the Dragons forced an error from Marcelo Montoya with a strong kick chase and they bagged a second try in the 30th minute when Tyrell Sloan chimed into the backline and put Mikaele Ravalawa over in the right corner for an 8-6 lead.

On the back of a penalty and a six-again the Dragons made it three tries 11 minutes when Hunt showed great strength to burst through three defenders and score from close range. Lomax's first conversion of the night made it 14-6.

Lomax then slotted a 42-metre field goal in the 40th minute to take the Dragons out to a 16-6 lead at the break.

Mosese Suli Try

The second half started the way the first had finished with Lomax flying above Montoya to pull down a bomb and cross for a try in his 100th NRL game. The conversion gave the Dragons a 16-point lead.

The Dragons went further ahead in the 52nd minute when Roger Tuivasa-Sheck made contact with a dropout before it had travelled 10 metres and Lomax slotted a simple penalty goal.

With the Warriors pressing the Dragons' line it was Johnson who put the ball down and Hunt picked up the scraps before passing to Tyrell Sloan who raced 90 metres to score and the Red V were rocking at 30-6.

A trademark acrobatic putdown by Dallin Watene-Zelkezniak in the 70th minute proved little consolation for the Warriors as they slumped to their heaviest loss of the season.

Match Snapshot

  • The Dragons completed 21 of 23 sets in the first half at 91 per cent and finished the night with 35 of 41 sets at 85 per cent.
  • Dragons centre Zac Lomax made his 100th NRL appearance and celebrated with 176 run metres, a try and a monster two-point field goal on the stroke of half-time. 
  • Warriors back-rower Jackson Ford was placed on report in the 54th minute for a crusher tackle.
  • Dragons fullback Tyrell Sloan has scored nine tries in 10 games at WIN Stadium.
  • Warriors prop Addin Fonua-Blake made 233 metres from 24 runs.
  • New Dragons recruit Fa'amanu Brown has now played at five clubs - Sharks, Bulldogs, Wests Tigers, Knights and Dragons.

Mikaele Ravalawa Try

  • Warriors fullback Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad made 248 run metres from 26 runs.
  • A big night in the centres for Moses Suli with a try, 166 metres and three tackle breaks. 
  • Warriors prop Mitch Barnett played his 150th NRL game.
  • Dragons forward Raymond Faitala-Mariner was placed on report for a hip drop tackle.
  • Jack de Belin and Blake Lawrie combined for 30 runs and 243 metres off the bench for the Dragons.
  • Tom Eisenhuth worked tirelessly for the Dragons with 56 tackles while Raymond Faitala-Mariner came up with 43.

Ben Hunt Try

Plays of the Game 

Zac Lomax's long range field goal in the 40th minute was sweetly struck and gave the home side a huge boost of confidence going into half-time. On the back of three straight tries to open up an eight-point lead the Red V stretched it to 10 when Jacob Liddle fired a 15-metre bullet pass to Lomax who slotted the shot from 42 metres out. The Parra-bound flyer then produced a spectacular catch from a Ben Hunt bomb to grab the Dragons' fourth try early in the second half as he continued his stunning 2024 form.

A 2-point field goal for Lomax's 100!

Zac Lomax Try

What they Said 

"That was our most complete performance [of the year]. Went for 80 minutes. Really pleased the way we stuck to our guns, stuck to our plan. It was probably the back end of that first half, a 20-minute period where we stayed in the arm wrestle, completed our sets, kicked long and backed our chase. That was probably the turning point. I think Zac [Lomax] needs to be discussed in the Origin conversation, let's be fair dinkum about it. He is just in form and in Origin you need to have players like that. He comes up with big plays in big moments and I think in Origin that's what you need. He has the temperament for Origin as well." - Dragons coach Shane Flanagan

Dragons: Round 7

"I thought we completely lost the ruck, they blew us away, they ran so hard. Off the back of some poor discipline I thought we lost our way defensively. Their momentum was fierce and we weren't calm enough to get together and slow it down tonight. There are moments that can hurt but we want to be that team that when moments don't go our way that we find a way to get back in the fight. You can't have a poor attitude around errors and when things don't go your way." - Warriors coach Andrew Webster

Warriors: Round 7

What's Next

The Dragons face off against the Roosters in the traditional Anzac Day showpiece at Allianz Stadium on Thursday. Preceding that match will be the Warriors-Titans clash at Go Media Stadium, kicking off a triple-header on a special day on the sporting calendar in both Australia and New Zealand.

Acknowledgement of Country

The New Zealand Warriors honour the mana of the Indigenous peoples of Aotearoa, Australia and the Pacific. We acknowledge the traditional kaitiaki of the lands, elders past and present, their stories, their traditions, their mamae and their mana motuhake.

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